Ngrams – 1858

Boy v Man:
Some interesting variance I found regarding the terms man and boy. The words seem almost interchangeable. While a man can be 23 years old, a boy can be 17, 18, or even 45 years old. One ad even uses both terms for the same slave.
The term color is generally preceded by a descriptor like perfectly black, or dark copper, and very dark.
Said v says:
The terms “says” seems to only appear in captured ads where the slave has communicated verbally. However, in the 1858 ads, the term “said,” on the other hand, does not have even a single that connotes the slave, owner, or capturer’s verbiage. Instead, in every case (14 total) it is uses more as a demonstrative pronoun such as we would presently use “this.”
Mexico:
While Mexico is not mentioned in captured ads, it shows up fairly regularly in runaway ads. The masters tend to suggest Mexico as a common escape. Mexico/Mexican occurs 9 times but one of these is counted twice as it was printed in both the telegraph and gazette.
Horses:
It seems horses (mules and ponies) are more frequent in runaway ads than captured ads. When these animals appear they are often given at least color descriptions if not breed as well.

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